FOLLOWING the latest Government advice regarding the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 RYA Youth National Championships has been postponed.

The prestigious regatta, the UK’s premier youth racing event, was due to take place from April 3-10 in Pwllheli.

Around 750 young people and adults from all over the UK were expected to be on site at Plas Heli, the Welsh National Sailing academy and events centre.

However, the Government is advising against mass gatherings, to minimise social contact and avoid non-essential travel to curb the spread of the virus.

In light of this, the RYA has suspended all activity, including the youth nationals, until April 30 when the situation will be reviewed.

It will be the first time since the youth nationals began in 1978 that the event has not taken place as planned.

Refunds will be issued automatically for all competitors.

The RYA’s intention will be to run the event later in the year.

Mark Nicholls, RYA youth racing manager, said: “No-one wants to have to cancel sports events, especially when they are as loved as the youth nationals is, but these are extraordinary times and we must follow Government guidance.

“The threat of coronavirus is a serious one and it is our duty to do all in our power to limit its spread and protect the health of our sailors, volunteers, race officials and staff.

“We appreciate this will be disappointing news for everyone who had been looking forward to another great youth national championships.

“We will be working hard on plans to stage the youth nationals later in the year, and will release further details once the picture is clearer.”